Question about free-ranging....with livestock?

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by grullablue, May 24, 2008.

  1. grullablue

    grullablue Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Feb 27, 2008
    Madison, Wisconsin
    Some of you may have read my post about the wonderful county guy who is demolishing our coop dream because of zoning permits..... it's already been started. A last resort before we tear it down....

    I'm wondering.....do any of you let your chickens roam with livestock? I have a large paddock area fenced in the horse fence I've seen many of you use for runs (the 2x4" squares), and I've also been to a farm that had a menagerie of animals including various types of poultry all fenced in the same large area...it was really quite neat! I'm just wondering.....

    This area houses 6 "mini" livestock critters.... 2 mini horses, 2 mini donkeys and 2 pygmy goats. The two goats actually came from the farm where all the poultry roamed with the animals. I don't think my donkeys or horses have ever seen a chicken before. I'm wondering, if we put the coop we are building IN their paddock.....the chickens would have a place to get away from them, and would be locked in at night....but might it work to keep them out to "free range" with them during the day?

    WHich brings my free ranging questions. The fence is 5' high. Will they fly over it? I don't know what breed they are, I've now been told white rock, and white leghorn.... (www.glacierridge.com/chickens) If they did fly out, would they know to fly back into the area to get back to their coop? They would have plenty of areas to get away from the other animals, and if it didn't work out, I could build them a run....off their coop, I'd have to figure a way to keep the other animals from rubbing on it and destroying it, but it could be done. My donkeys and mini horses are good guard animals, and we've never had a predator inside the fence. It's also got electric on the bottom, middle and top. I know we would have to worry about hawks and things....but free ranging anywhere, we'd need to worry about that anyway. I'm just wondering.....trying to come up with a way to keep our nice coop my husband started building, and keep the *(%[email protected]#[email protected] county guy off our backs......

    Angie
     
  2. grullablue

    grullablue Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Feb 27, 2008
    Madison, Wisconsin
    Ok...not that it matters much (except for flying ability) but I'm back to thinking white leghorn....white rocks, I see they look very similar, but lay brown eggs. These guys came out of white eggs.

    Angie
     
  3. Bi0sC0mp

    Bi0sC0mp Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 21, 2008
    Raiford,FLA
    keep there wings clipped they should be alright
     
  4. CarlaRiggs

    CarlaRiggs Chillin' With My Peeps

    Angie,
    I didn't see your previous post about the chickens/ordinance in your area. I'm sorry to hear this is happening to you. And I'm sorry if it was already discussed, but I have a question... why are your other animals allowed, but not chickens?
    Have you tried contacting the group in Madison about helping with zoning variances?
    This makes no sense to me at all. [​IMG] One would think that the city would try to control backyard chickens, not quash the movement. It's happening whether city council likes it or not.

    The best way to fight this mind set (chickens are agricultural) is by stating that one's chickens are pets. However, with 15+ chickens, I'm not sure that will fly! [​IMG]

    Carla
     
  5. CarlaRiggs

    CarlaRiggs Chillin' With My Peeps

    Angie,
    I just noticed a post from France located in the Where Am I? forum.... she's got some great photos of her area with chickens, geese, goats, et al happily sharing a pastured area. [​IMG]

    You might want to take a look and then ask her some questions.

    Carla
     
  6. Davaroo

    Davaroo Poultry Crank

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    Feb 4, 2007
    Leesville, SC
    Seems like we went here already in your other post. Did you miss it?
    Yes, you can mingle chickens with other livestock and in fact, they do well that way. They stay out of the way pretty well and with ruminants there is a neat symbiosis going on, as the chickens eat the bugs and things attracted to the droppings. THe larger animals help to keep some predators at bay, too.
    They still need all the same things they do anywhere else and you still gotta be wary of letting them run around in filth. This means you have to keep the paddock cleaned of encess animals droppings.
    But you shouldnt allow the chickens to mingle with swine, ever. Did you know human influenzas crossed from birds, most likely chickens, through pigs?
     
  7. grullablue

    grullablue Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Feb 27, 2008
    Madison, Wisconsin
    Thanks for the replies. The chickens are allowed, it's just that the new building is not, in the two areas that we can see to put it because of zoning ordinances. One area is too close to the road, the other, too close to the pond (runoff issues I guess!)

    Wing clipping, I had not thought of...I can sure look into that! Ours aren't exactly tame (leads me to believe they are, in fact leghorns, as I hear that leghorn temperment can be pretty uptight, as these girls are). They have been handled since they hatched, but don't like it one bit! I did think their ability to fly would benefit them somewhat, not knowing how my animals would be....the horses and donkeys have never seen a chicken before....anyone keeping chickens and livestock together....you ever had your livestock chase them? Again, I would have a coop in there for them to get away. But....maybe would need to clip their wings, because if they did fly over the 5 foot fence, would they know to get back in?

    Elderroo, I wanted to bring this to attention in a new post titled such, so that it would be seen by people who may keep their chickens with other livestock, that is why I posted a new post. My last post was specifically about tractors, I figured this one would be seen more by people who may already keep chickens and livestock together.

    Angie
     

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